Inbound or Outbound Marketing: Part 1 What's the difference?

I'm often asked about the difference between Inbound and Outbound marketing. People ask "Where should I place my ads?" or "Which one will give me more leads?" My first response to these questions is usually "Do you know the difference between advertising and marketing?" Most people don't know the answer! Without that knowledge, how do you expect to be successful? Let's start with the basics then, what is the difference between advertising and marketing?

Advertising is, at the end of the day, an announcement. Of course there is an art to it; in fact there is a very creative component to it that precludes many people from doing it well. It can be as simple as a 2 line classified ad or as complex as an infomercial. The former is within the skill set of most people, the latter probably is not. Either way, it is really just an announcement.

Marketing, on the other hand, is concerned with the mix of activities that bring buyers and sellers together. Advertising is a component of marketing, in the scheme of the whole selling process.

Right away, you can probably see why web based marketing is more than just web based advertising. If your website is only announcing your products and services, it's only doing part of the job for you. It should be helping you move prospects along the sales process. We won't get into the attributes of a good website (look at my previous blogs and explore my for more ideas).

Your website should be an important tool in your marketing plan. It's not just about telling prospects about your products and services. It should also be helping you gather the names of people that may be interested in what you sell. It should actually be taking orders for your products. It should also be answering questions and educating prospects, customers and clients. It should be qualifying prospects so that when you get a call, it's from a motivated, interested buyer. It should help eliminate the casual inquiries or help turn them into real buyers.

With all of this in mind, we should be all set to look at the differences between Inbound and Outbound marketing. We'll do that in part 2. In the mean time, feel free to look around my website and read my previous blogs for some more thoughts

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